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Westworld is leaving HBO Max

Westworld is leaving HBO Max


Yes, the once-flagship HBO Original TV show is close to meeting the same cost-cutting fate as those episodes of Sesame Street.

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A black, red, and yellow rendition of the HBO Max logo.
Is there going to be any HBO content left for the upcoming Max app?
Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Just over a month after HBO canceled its once-hit original show Westworld, it’s planning on yanking the back catalog from its streaming service, according to Variety, Deadline, IndieWire, and The Wrap.

It’s currently not clear when Westworld will be removed from Warner Bros. Discovery’s flagship streaming service, but it likely won’t be alone. The reports indicate that HBO’s Love Life and The Nevers will also have to find new homes.

When we checked on Monday evening, all three shows were still available on the service. IndieWire points out a tweet from Gordita Chronicles creator Claudia Forestieri indicating this past weekend would be the last one for her show (which is also still streaming, for now), so the ax could fall very soon.

In August, around 200 Sesame Street episodes were removed from HBO Max

The cut is reportedly happening during a “financial review” at the company, according to Deadline, which reports they are “likely to resurface on other company platforms.” Variety indicates that WBD’s cost savings occur as the entertainment conglomerate cuts off residual payments to the cast and crew.

While HBO Max — which may soon just be known as “Max” after it’s combined with Discovery Plus — has already lost other content in the past few months, this one would be a real whammy.

Since David Zaslav took over the company that resulted from WarnerMedia and Discovery’s merger earlier this year, it’s been clear that HBO Max was in for some rough waters; before the deal was even fully finished, executives were already telling investors about how they would be looking for “content efficiencies.”

Since then, we’ve seen a Batgirl project canned, around 200 episodes of Sesame Street removed from streaming and dozens of other titles like Infinity Train and Moonshot meeting the same fate that’s now reportedly coming for Westworld. But I don’t think many people would’ve guessed that the latter would wind up on the chopping block; it was one of HBO’s tentpole shows in the era when a lot of people still loved Game of Thrones and were turning to the network for Serious Entertainment.

While Westworld’s ratings certainly dipped throughout its four-season run, it’ll be hard to trust that anything will stay on the streaming service if the show is actually axed. Maybe I’d better finally get around to watching The Sopranos and The Wire, just in case.